RENSSELAER PLATEAU ALLIANCE INC

Conservation through Community

Averill Park, NY   |  www.rensselaerplateau.org

Mission

The Rensselaer Plateau Alliance works with the community to promote and facilitate the conservation of the Rensselaer Plateau's undeveloped and unfragmented forests and other ecologically important areas. These possess many significant natural features and provide many benefits including natural habitats for plants and animals; forest products, recreation and most important, water and air quality.

Ruling year info

2009

Executive Director

James Bonesteel

Main address

PO Box 790 l

Averill Park, NY 12018 USA

Show more contact info

EIN

94-3444825

NTEE code info

Forest Conservation (C36)

Natural Resource Conservation and Protection (C30)

Environmental Education and Outdoor Survival Programs (C60)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

Sign in or create an account to view Form(s) 990 for 2020, 2019 and 2018.
Register now

Communication

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

RPA exists to minimize these threats to the unique potential of the Rensselaer Plateau. Two key problems are: 1) Intact natural areas are less common, more vulnerable, and harder to access at the same time as the Plateau’s natural ecosystems are becoming more important to the health and wellbeing of a growing human population. 2) As a society, we are becoming increasingly disconnected from the natural world and losing a critical, instinctive understanding of how important the functioning natural world is to our own health, happiness, and survival.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Community Forest (Poestenkill)

The Community Forest provides 350 acres of recreational forest land that is open to the public during daylight hours.

The Community Forest provides educational, recreational, environmental and economic benefits to the local and greater Rensselaer Plateau community in Rensselaer County, NY, including: training programs for sustainable forest management, economic development opportunities through tourism and local forest products industry, children’s educational programs, interpretive hikes, and woods walks. As a publicly accessible site, the Community Forest includes trails for recreational use. This demonstration forest will educate and encourage landowners to use conservation tools and techniques to manage their land and conserve it for themselves and future generations.

The Community Forest is managed by an active committee of community members that acts as an advisory committee. The committee is made up of local residents, representatives from partner organizations and some RPA board members. There are also ex-officio participants from local government. The committee has members representing local universities, trail users, local businesses, science, elementary and environmental education.

Our vision for the Community Forest is that it act as a hub for a wide variety of educational and recreational activities that will expose a diverse population to the importance of the conservation of our forests and other ecologically important areas and foster their active participation.

Population(s) Served
Adults
Family relationships
Children and youth
People with disabilities

The East Nassau Community Forest is 325 acres of recreational forest land that will be open to the public during daylight hours. RPA currently has a contract to purchase this parcel and has been awarded a grant from the US Forest Service Community Forest Program, ranking #1 nationally, that will pay for half of the purchase price. We hope to close by last 2016 or early 2017.
The Community Forest will provide educational, recreational, environmental and economic benefits to the local and greater Rensselaer Plateau community in Rensselaer County, NY, including: training programs for sustainable forest management, economic development opportunities through tourism and local forest products industry, children’s educational programs, interpretive hikes, and woods walks. As a publicly accessible site, the Community Forest will include trails for recreational use. This demonstration forest will educate and encourage landowners to use conservation tools and techniques to manage their land and conserve it for themselves and future generations.
The Community Forest is managed by an active committee of community members that acts as an advisory committee. The committee is made up of local residents, representatives from partner organizations, local government, neighbors and some RPA board members.

Population(s) Served
Adults
Children and youth
Ethnic and racial groups
Family relationships
Health

Rensselaer Youth Outdoors is a network of partners that introduces and engages the children and families of Rensselaer County in the wonder, science, and adventure of nature in an effort to create a healthier, more sustainable community in an increasingly complex world.

We envision by 2030:

Rensselaer County youth are inspired by experiencing the natural beauty of local fields, forests, lakes, and streams to engage in healthy family activities and contribute to a sustainable future.

We envision a local culture and infrastructure that provides in-depth and ongoing opportunities for children and families to learn and grow in nature. These opportunities are now engrained in the curriculum of all Rensselaer County schools, and the resources and programs provided by the schools and partners are secure and have become an expectation of the community. All families and children in the county have ongoing opportunities to engage in science-based outdoor activities that inspire a sense of wonder and adventure and ultimately stewardship of the natural world.

Population(s) Served
Children and youth
Young adults
Families

Where we work

Our Sustainable Development Goals

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn more about Sustainable Development Goals.

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

Conserve Unbroken Forests & Ecologically Important Areas
Through an alliance of privately and publicly protected land we aim to conserve 18,000 acres by 2018. We will use land donations, conservation easements, and the purchase of development rights to achieve this objective. This overarching goal will ensure that the Plateau's clean air, fresh water, unique wildlife habitat and recreational areas continue to benefit current and future generations.

Expand Education, Outreach & Communication

We will increase awareness of the Plateau's valuable benefits by expanding outreach and education to community members and local municipalities. Landowners will be provided with opportunities to gain knowledge of sustainable forest management practices. Educational events for children will teach them about unique and natural resources found on the Plateau. We will enhance and expand our comprehensive resources available for local municipalities.

Establish the Plateau as a Recreational Destination

We will develop a Trail Vision Plan that will establish the Plateau as a recreational destination with a regional trail network, connecting existing trails on the Plateau and other trails throughout Rensselaer County. Engaging the community, we will make the Plateau a more accessible resource for the public by developing new trails for cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, snowmobiling, horseback riding, hiking, bird watching, and many other family activities

Establish a Community Forest for the People

We will establish a Community Forest that will provide educational, recreational, environmental, and economic benefits to the local and greater Rensselaer Plateau community, such as: training programs for sustainable forest management, economic development opportunities through tourism & the local forest products industry, child and adult educational programs, and publicly accessible trails. As a demonstration forest, the community will benefit from learning about best practices for stewardship and conservation.

Increase Organizational Capacity

We recognize that, as we pursue new opportunities, we must invest in a strong infrastructure. Paid staffing, print materials, and an increased schedule of activities require funding. We will generate the necessary funds to support RPA staff and operations, and to purchase and establish the Community Forest.

Conserve Unbroken Forests & Ecologically Important Areas

We will work in partnership with a number of organizations to accomplish this goal. Our current partner for this goal are NYS Department of Environmental Conservation, Hudson River Estuary Program, Renssleaer Land Trust and Agricultural Stewardship Association. We will use a variety of techniques to reach landowners who may be interested in voluntarily conserving their land. We will send post cards, e-mails, and press releases and hold open house events for landowners. We will use funding sources such as the US Forest Service Forest Legacy Program that have a capacity for large awards.

Expand Education, Outreach & Communication

We will work with our many partners, including but not limited to the Hudson River Estuary Program, Cornell University, Dyken Pond Environmental Education Center, Rensselaer Land Trust, New York Forest Owners Association, Empire State Forest Products Association and others to deliver quality programs and workshops. We will utilize our Community Forest(s) as a demonstration forest and we will host a monthly lecture series on a variety of topics.

Establish the Plateau as a Recreational Destination

We will seek funding and will work with a variety of partners including but not limited to the Hudson River Valley Greenway, Rensselaer Land Trust, Adirondack Mountain Club, Taconic Hiking Club, Saratoga Mountain Bike Association and others. We will hire professional planners as necessary and as funds allow and will engage the public to produce a Trail Vision Plan in increasing levels of detail. We will partner with these same organizations to implement the plan.

Establish a Community Forest for the People

This goal has already been attained and was such a big success that we are currently working to establish a second Community Forest in East Nassau. The strategies include holding public workshops and forming a committee of community members and then seeking a willing seller and funding to acquire the property.

Increase Organizational Capacity

We will continue to grow our base of supporters by following the Comprehensive Development Plan created in 2014. . .

RPA has a proven track record in engaging the communities of the region, in education and outreach to landowners and in grant writing and finding funding to support projects.

RPA's strength has always lay with its devoted volunteer board of directors and its large and increasing number of partners. Since June of 2015 RPA now has two dedicated part time staff members.

RPA's board of directors has skills ranging from land use attorney to biologist, retired educators, research scientists, environmental educators, master forest owners and sociologists.

RPA's partners range from the land trusts community (Land Trust Alliance, Rensselaer Land Trust, Agricultural Stewardship Association, Columbia Land Conservancy, etc.) , to environmental education centers and parks (Dyken Pond, Grafton Lakes State Park), recreational organizations and clubs (Adirondack Mountain Club, Taconic Hiking Club, Saratoga Mountain Bike Association, etc.), government agencies (NYS DEC, Hudson River Estuary Program, Hudson River Valley Greenway), professional trade organizations (Empire State Forest Products Association, New York Logger Training, Inc.), landowner organizations (New York Forest Owners Association), large conservation organizations (The Conservation Fund, Open Space Institute, The Nature Conservancy, etc.), local towns and villages and others. RPA engages and works with various partners continuously to provide programming, educations and land conservation projects.

Conserve Unbroken Forests & Ecologically Important Areas

We currently have nearly 14,000 acres of land either already conserved or funded and in the process to be conserved. That leaves 4,000 more acres to achieve our first goal.

Expand Education, Outreach & Communication

We have provided with our partners a wide variety of educational programs and workshops. Our outreach and communications has become more consistent and formalized. We will continue to provide more and more educational programming as our capacity continues to increase.

Establish the Plateau as a Recreational Destination

We have completed Phases 1 and 2 of a Regional Trail Vision and Regional Trail Action Plan.

Establish a Community Forest for the People

We now have two very successful community forests and are working on a third are now working on our second Community Forest in a different corner of the Plateau community.

Increase Organizational Capacity

We are growing every year. After hiring our first staff in 2015 we now have five staff members. We expect to hire a sixths and maybe a seventh in 2021.

Financials

RENSSELAER PLATEAU ALLIANCE INC
lock

Unlock financial insights by subscribing to our monthly plan.

Subscribe

Unlock nonprofit financial insights that will help you make more informed decisions. Try our monthly plan today.

  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

Want to see how you can enhance your nonprofit research and unlock more insights?
Learn more about GuideStar Pro.

Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

lock

Connect with nonprofit leaders

Subscribe

Build relationships with key people who manage and lead nonprofit organizations with GuideStar Pro. Try a low commitment monthly plan today.

  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

Want to see how you can enhance your nonprofit research and unlock more insights? Learn More about GuideStar Pro.

lock

Connect with nonprofit leaders

Subscribe

Build relationships with key people who manage and lead nonprofit organizations with GuideStar Pro. Try a low commitment monthly plan today.

  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

Want to see how you can enhance your nonprofit research and unlock more insights? Learn More about GuideStar Pro.

RENSSELAER PLATEAU ALLIANCE INC

Board of directors
as of 12/15/2020
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Fred DeMay

Rachel Riemann Akera

Fred DeMay

Jim de Waal Malefyt

David Farren

Dick Gibbs

Shari Gibbs

Alice Howard

Lawrence Howard

Walter Kersch

Fred McCagg

Jeff Briggs

August Schneeberg

Hanns Meissner

Pam Jacobson

James Slavin

Keith Hirokawa

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 12/13/2020

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? GuideStar partnered on this section with CHANGE Philanthropy and Equity in the Center.

Leadership

The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
White/Caucasian/European
Gender identity
Male, Not transgender (cisgender)
Sexual orientation
Heterosexual or Straight
Disability status
Person without a disability

Race & ethnicity

No data

Gender identity

No data

 

No data

Sexual orientation

No data

Disability

No data